Post # 17
Yes, we have a very different view on taxes in Canada being that we are significantly more socialist than the US. But, we get a lot in return for our taxes (e.g. free health care, year-long maternity leaves, a significant social safety net etc.). Note though that when I say money is deducted from each pay cheque I mean a very nominal amount….like, maybe $30/biweekly paycheque, geared to income).
Obviously those who are anti-taxation as opposed to those are pro-taxation have very different philosophies and I respect both sides of the argument, but will say that I am very happy to live somewhere where we get a lot in return for our tax dollars 🙂
Post # 18
Yes, we would have to pay more in taxes. Something I am willing to do. But many people are not. The average American tax rate is like 27% and Canada’s is like 32%. But they have lots of other benefits besides maternity leave. Again, I am not saying we have to create a system that is completely modeled after another country’s but I think we could find a way to help mothers more than we do. Even requiring unpaid leave that is longer than 12 weeks and closing those loopholes would be more helpful than what we have now.
(And you don’t have to agree. I was just putting the information out there for discussion as I have seen people mentioning it a lot around here.)
Post # 19
Wow, world superpower indeed. That map makes us look pretty pathetic if you ask me.
Post # 20
I would LOVE to have a year of with my baby.
I pay into my own STD through my job and often times it’s like pulling teeth to get that money. I had to tap into it a few years ago and it was such a pain…. But at least I’ll get something while I’m out.
Post # 21
@travellingfool: In Italy you get about 2 months prior to birth and 3 after birth and you get 80% of your salary. After that you can take and extra 3 months at 30% of your salary then up to a year with no salary but you can keep your job. Which is very good but the flip side is:
we pay higher taxes for a service not everyone is going to use (which i don’t think is fair).
And employers are less likely to hire women.
The crisis also doesn’t help since most people can’t afforr to stay at home with no salary or only 30%. Unfortunatly good maternity leave makes women undesireble employees.
The other other issue is that although we supposedly have free health care the system is [email protected] (excuse the french) getting an appointment is near to impossible (It’s compulsory to do an amniocentesis here if you are over 35 which should be free, in reality you have to book through the health care office in your area of residence which means that if you live in big cities there is no way you will be able to get an appointment at the right time so you will end up anyway going privately which will cost you about 5.000 euros, which considering that the average salary in Italy is 1.200 euros is more than 4 months pay).
So yes the US may have it’s downsides but the grass is not always greener on the other side trust me!
Post # 22
Right there is no perfect system. But not having any leave doesn’t seem right or healthy for society either.
Post # 23
@travellingfool: Oh also you only have access to maternity leave if you have what is know as a contratto a tempo indeterminato which mean an indeterminate time contract as opposed to a determined time contract (a contract that only last a set number of months, usually 12 or 11) which is what most companies/employers offer since in Italy it’s bacically impossible to fire someone if they have the first type of contract. so what most employers do is give you the second type and renew it every time it expires and usually on these types of contract there is a clause saying that if you get pregnant you don’t get payed for the time you are off work.
Post # 24
I think there definetly should be, but it often comes with a whole new set of Cons so it’s a questionof choosing as a society which cons you prefer 🙂
Not sure if that made complete sense!
Also the Scandinavian countries you have mentioned pay taxes of about 55% of their income. I have many danish and swedish friends who complain about the system there.
Anyway this article is about the differences in the UK and Denmark supposedly the most family friendly of countries:
Post # 25
Dang, even Iran has better maternity laws.
Post # 27
Everyone in society benefits when new mothers and fathers are given paid time off with baby. Better bonding has societal benefits in infant development, lower post partum depression rates, less stress and less sick time for mom when she finally does go back to work. All of these prevent other costs that everyone would pay for anyway because of the preventative care savings over the insurance costs, etc.
It’s also a little thing called HUMAN F%$& DIGNITY!
I am SO sick of hearing people worry about how their taxes might go up a small bit to cover something for someone else. Do you drive on roads? Enjoy having a lit street when you go to another town? Enjoy drinking clean water? Have you had a relative who survived cancer because of government funding for research? You never needed that cure until suddenly you did and it was there (and yes, private pharmaceutical research occurs through massive government subsidy). There is a collective cost to human society and not every service can or should be provided a la carte.
The sad truth is that for the difference in taxes countries like Europe and Canada pay, they get so much more in services. Too much money of the taxes we pay gets wasted by insisting on allowing private companies provide inefficient services, such as health insurance. The US has the most wasteful, expensive health care system in the world. Yes, we have great specialized care, but we also have horrible primary care with life expectancies, and infant and mother mortality rates that rank us 37th in the world. You can check out the study in that totally biased socialist rag Business Insider.
I think most of the people who complain about universal health care (which the non partisan office of budget and management found would actually save the most money) and taxes are also the least likely to have traveled abroad or ever even used any of the health services of those countries. It means they believe every boogy man put out there by the private companies who don’t want to lose their easy money.
It is criminal the way the United State treats mothers and fathers and children in this country. We have the most anti family policies of any developed nation, and shame on us for denying families access to sensible family leave policies. And for those who are child free by choice, these same benefits should and do extend in other countries to family illness, so even if you don’t have children you can and should be able to take time to help your sick parents or siblings, spouse, or even yourself.
End rant, but this makes me SOOOOOOOO ANGRY!
Post # 29
I could go an a whole psychological attachment theory rant but I think we got that covered.
My co-worker just came back, here was her deal:
6 weeks short term disability at 30% pay + 1 week of her paid vacation time 100% pay
Luckily she paid only $250 for her Dr, labs and L&D- which was because she had an “extra” ultra sound, amnio and genetic testing. Otherwise she said it would have been $0. I will be keeping my insurance, since FH’s only covers 80%.
We plan to save a lot of $ while I am pregnant so I can use FMLA and stay home for 3 months w/ the baby to bond, so 6 weeks at 30%, 6 weeks at 0% but I can keep my job at least.
There’s a thread here about how much L&D fees are and seems the average on that thread is around 3k.
Post # 30
- Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort
I got no maternity leave at the universities I teach at. Wonderful people in my departments helped out for a few weeks, but I still had to be back in the classroom 2.5 weeks after LO was born. It sucks.
Post # 31
wow I had no idea about the US not paying for maternity leave. This is terrible! In Switzerland we have 4 months off paid. This is a given. When the time comes for me I am planning on taking 6 months. (2 unpaid).
We do pay a lot of tax, but we have a lot of benefits.
I think you pretty much covered it. Well said. You should run for something 😉
I heard in Sweeden they even have paternity leave. 6 months for the mother and 6 months for the father. So lucky!